Online Giving: Tithes & Offerings
Tithes & Offerings, both a contribution to the funds of a church or ministry, given to or through the church or ministry.
Let us look at Tithing.
The Tithe: to pay or give a tenth part of especially for the support of the church
There is no way that I can or will make people pay ten percent of their wages to the church if they do not wish. I do not have that authority. The people who pay ten percent, or a tithe, of their income do so because they want to.
Why do people tithe to the church? The reasons are many.
In this study, I discovered at least ten reasons why people give ten percent of their income to the church. And a deeper study of these reasons will help us to understand the great blessing of tithing and the biblical responsibility to tithe.
To Honor the Creator.
17 Now tell us what you think about this: Is it right to pay taxes to Caesar or not?"
18 But Jesus knew their evil motives. "You hypocrites!" he said. "Why are you trying to trap me?
19 Here, show me the coin used for the tax." When they handed him a Roman coin,
20 he asked, "Whose picture and title are stamped on it?"
21 Caesar's," they replied. "Well, then," he said, "give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God."
Greed is one of the basic drives of mankind. Children grasp their toys and cry, "Mine!"
Someone noted three attitudes in the parable of the good Samaritan.
30 And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him half dead.
31 And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
32 And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on the other side.
33 But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
34 And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
35 And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host, and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I will repay thee.
36 Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?
37 And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou likewise.
And it is this, that everything we have belongs to God, and we are stewards of His goods.
God owns the entire world and its substance. "The earth is the LORD"S, and the fulness thereof" (Psalm 24:1).
"Behold, all souls are mine" (Ezekiel 18:4).
"The silver is mine, and the gold is mine" (Haggai 2:8).
It is God who gives people the power to obtain wealth (Psalm 75:6-7; Ecclesiastes 5:19).
We are not to glory in what God has given us, but to glory in Him (Jeremiah 9:23-24).
Why should we be grudge God ten percent when everything actually belongs to Him?
If it were not for Him, there would be no land, no seed, no strength, no income, and no life.
How generous He is to tell us, Leviticus 27:30 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD'S: it is holy unto the LORD.
To Acknowledge My Heritage.
"And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Galatians 3:29).
Abraham was the first tithe payer of record (Genesis 14:20).
Genesis 14:20 And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.
Abraham's grandson, Jacob, paid tithes (Genesis 28:22).
Genesis 28:22 And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.
Scripture says that Levi, Abraham's descendant and the father of the tribe from which the priesthood came, paid tithes in Abraham (Hebrews 7:9).
Hebrews 7:9 And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, payed tithes in Abraham.
My heritage of paying a tithe precedes the law of Moses. As a child of Abraham and an heir of the promise of Abraham. I acknowledge my family relationship by paying tithes.
Jesus said to the Jews, "If ye were Abraham's children, ye would do the works of Abraham" (John 8:39).
It would be strange to claim to be a child of Abraham and yet to neglect one of Abraham's most fundamental and noteworthy acts. I pay my tithes as a spiritual descendant of Abraham, the father of the faithful.
To Fulfill the Covenant.
"For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remaineth is glorious" (II Corinthians 3:11).
In every comparison of the law of Moses and the new covenant that came by Jesus Christ, the new covenant stands supreme. The characteristic word in the Book of Hebrews is better, and everything is better about the new covenant. If the law demanded tithes, then how much more should we who are under the "perfect law of liberty" give our tithes willingly.
James 1:25 However, the person who continues to study God's perfect teachings that make people free and who remains committed to them will be blessed. People like that don't merely listen and forget; they actually do what God's teachings say.
If the law is written in the fleshly tables of our hearts and we follow God's commands not from outward rules but because of our new nature, then how quickly and how easily we should give the tenth that belongs to the Lord"
2 Corinthians 3:3-6
3 It's clear that you are Christ's letter, written as a result of our ministry. You are a letter written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, a letter written not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.
4 Christ gives us confidence about you in God's presence.
5 By ourselves we are not qualified in any way to claim that we can do anything. Rather, God makes us qualified.
6 He has also qualified us to be ministers of a new promise, a spiritual promise, not a written one. Clearly, what was written brings death, but the Spirit brings life.
Some people say, "Oh, we do not pay tithes, because tithing was under the law." If that is a sufficient reason for not paying tithes, then we could also mistreat our parents, for the law said, Honour thy father and thy mother" (Exodus 20:12).
Exodus 20:12 Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
In actuality, we honor our father and mother and we give our tithes because the principles of the law are written in our hearts by the Spirit of God. We give willingly and liberally because the Spirit motivates us to give what God has said is His.
To Show My Love.
"Many waters cannot quench love" (Song of Solomon 8:7).
Love is the strongest motivation in the world. I have seen bumper stickers that say, "If you love Jesus, honk you horn!" Anyone can honk his horn. But David said, "Neither will I offer…unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing" (II Samuel 24:24). Someone should print a sticker that says, "If you love Jesus, pay your tithes!"
For someone who genuinely loves the Lord, the tithe is only the beginning of his giving. He gives not only his tithe, but also offerings (plural), not grudgingly and not of necessity, but cheerfully with love.
To Fulfill an Obligation.
Matthew 23:23 "How horrible it will be for you, scribes and Pharisees! You hypocrites! You give God one-tenth of your mint, dill, and cumin. But you have neglected justice, mercy, and faithfulness. These are the most important things in Moses' Teachings. You should have done these things without neglecting the others.
Jesus did not criticize the Pharisees for paying tithes. He commended them. He said it was something they "ought" to have done. The word ought expresses an obligation or duty. It is one of the strongest words in the English language. To pay tithes is something every Christian ought to do.
The word ought has three meanings: (a) obligation or duty; (b) desirability; (c) expectancy or probability. Each one of these meanings puts an obligation upon the Christian. It is desirable for him to pay his tithes, he is expected to pay his tithes, and he has a duty to pay his tithes.
To Escape Condemnation.
Malachi 3:8 Will a man rob God? Yet ye have robbed me. But ye say, Wherein have we robbed thee? In tithes and offerings.
9 Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me, even this whole nation.
10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
11 And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.
12 And all nations shall call you blessed: for ye shall be a delightsome land, saith the LORD of hosts.
How sad it is that people who are honest in business and who pay their debts to the bank, the store, and the government will not pay God what belongs to Him! Sometimes people quibble about whether they are "paying" or "giving" tithes, but both terms seem appropriate. The tithe is the Lord's and He expects us to pay it to Him; at the same time, He does not receive it until we give it to Him. He does not give us the authority to use His tithes for other purposes, but we have the power to spend it as long as it is in our hands. Nevertheless, a person is condemned if he spends God's money.
To Spread the Gospel.
(I Corinthians 9:14) In the same way, the Lord has commanded that those who spread the Good News should earn their living from the Good News.
(I Corinthians 1:21) For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
Romans 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
Tithing is God's way of supporting the ministry. In the Old Testament, the Levites and the priest were God's minister to the nation of Israel, and they were supported by tithes. In the New Testament, God has called people to minister the gospel. These ministers can be more effective if they do not have to provide for their livelihood by working on a secular job but can devote themselves full time to the work of God. They need time to give themselves to prayer and to the ministry of the Word.
It is not wrong for a man to labor with his hands, nor should a minister feel too good to engage in honest labor. Yet God's plan is for those who preach the gospel to live of the gospel.
9 Moses' Teachings say, "Never muzzle an ox when it is threshing grain." God's concern isn't for oxen.
10 Isn't he speaking entirely for our benefit? This was written for our benefit so that the person who plows or threshes should expect to receive a share of the crop.
11 If we have planted the spiritual seed that has been of benefit to you, is it too much if we receive part of the harvest from your earthly goods?
12 If others have the right to expect this from you, don't we deserve even more? But we haven't used our rights. Instead, we would put up with anything in order not to hinder the Good News of Christ in any way.
13 Don't you realize that those who work at the temple get their food from the temple? Don't those who help at the altar get a share of what is on the altar?
14 In the same way, the Lord has commanded that those who spread the Good News should earn their living from the Good News.
The application of this principle is that the minister of the gospel should earn his living from his ministry.
Some ministers have endured financial hardships and deprivation in order to proclaim the gospel in needy areas. If the tithing income insures that the minister can live in a good house, drive a good car, and buy sufficient clothes for his family, why should I begrudge providing these things to a man who would preach the gospel even if he had to work on a secular job to do it? It is a disgrace to a church if the pastor has to take a secular job to supply his family's needs when there should be sufficient tithing income available to allow him to do God's work on a full-time basis. My tithing can help to spread the gospel.
To Avoid a Curse.
"Ye are cursed with a curse: for ye have robbed me" (Malachi 3:9).
Someone has said, "You can't outgive God, and you can't outsqueeze Him either."
Some people put their money into "a bag with holes" (Haggai 1:6). They do not give God His tithe, bit they eventually spend the money for automobile repairs, medical bills, and a thousand other things that they might have avoided if they had been faithful to God in their giving.
God said that the whole nation of Israel was cursed because they had not given God His due. God asked Israel to dedicate the gold of Jericho to Him, but Achan took a wedge of gold and hid it in a tent. It became a curse to him and his whole family.
I do not want God to curse my blessings. I want to give Him His tithe.
To Enjoy God's Blessing.
"Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse… and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it " (Malachi 3:10).
Luke 6:38 Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again.
God blesses the people who pay tithes. They do not always have the most money or the best clothes, but they are blessed.
However, I am wary of those who promise, "If you give God a dollar, He will give you back four." The expectation of a return should not be our motivation for giving. And His richest blessings are not necessarily monetary.
But I do want God to notice me and remember me. He noticed that the widow put money into the treasury at the Temple. He noticed what Cornelius was giving. He noticed what Israel was not giving. He knows what we give and He notices when we give.
God has asked us to prove Him and see if He will not give us His blessings. I have trusted Him, tested Him, and tried Him, and I have concluded that it is better to give God what belongs to Him.
To Be Consistent.
"Be thou an example of the believers" (I Timothy 4:12).
At this time of my ministry. I do not plan to live on tithing income. It is all going into developing this ministry and church.
Another thing I would like to express, How can I receive tithes and not pay tithes? I can not do so and be consistent. The Levites, who received tithes, also paid tithes on what they received (Nehemiah 10:38). Preachers who receive tithes should be most faithful to pay them. I will pay my tithes.
Paying tithes will not save a person-everyone must be born again to be saved. But paying tithes will reap a blessing. Genuine Christian not only pay tithes, but they willingly pay tithes.
So let us keep all this in mind and do as God commands us to do! Amen!
And the end of the matter is, Fear God, and do exactly what He tells you to do.
Tithes & offerings are under the control of Tree of Life Church and are designated as general funds and can be used for any purpose as the church determines in accordance with the IRS regulations under Section 1702 (c) (2) of the Internal Revenue Code. Using this online giving page constitutes your agreement to relinquish control in accordance with this IRS regulation.
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